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Complaints Crouch Hill shut for roadworks - yet workers are not to be seen

PUBLISHED: 09:00 18 March 2017 | UPDATED: 16:04 18 March 2017

Novelty News owner Suryakat Patel

Novelty News owner Suryakat Patel

Archant

Shops are losing money and bus users are “stranded” due to month-long roadworks in Crouch Hill – yet builders haven’t been seen working for weeks.

Novelty News owner Suryakat Patel claims the dig, which allows contractors to pass wires underneath the road, has been disrupting his business for a month.

Cars can get past but the northbound bus stop is shut.

In February, Crouch Hill’s Overground station was reopened following eight months of disruption. Engineers were supposed to be electrifying the Gospel Oak to Barking line, but some of the parts were the wrong size and the work wasn’t finished, meaning stations will need to close again.

Mr Patel said: “They can build the Eurostar, they can send people to Mars, but they can’t pass a few wires under the road.

“There’s been nobody working on the site for ages. There have been builders there four days in the last month.

“I’ve spoken to Jeremy Corbyn about it and he said he’d chase it up for me. I’m yet to hear back and I’ve been trying to contact his office.”

Mr Patel also claims elderly people have been unable to go out because of the bus stop closure.

Rakesh Makanji, contractor Higgins’ site manager responsible for overseeing the social housing building project, blames the delay on bureaucracy.

Mr Makanji, 58, said: “I know it might look like no one has been working on it but the reason we’ve been held up is we’ve been waiting for clearance to finish the work.

“I appreciate there has been some disruption but we’re working on getting it sorted.”

Mr Makanji said the disruption should be over on Monday when his team gets permission to finish the job.

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